Artist: Serge Severe
Album: The MC
- Left You
- No Debate
- La Voz
- Say Nothing
- What The Sayin’
- Spat Energy
- New Generation
- Treat H.E.R. Right
- Stay Alive
- The Vigil
Serge Severe is back in the lab making music, after a sabbatical of sorts. It’s a pleasure for all of us to see him back in the studio, doing his thing, and creating an album of this caliber. The skills and talent that made him a staple on this site for years are still evident and shine greatly on his latest release, appropriately entitled, The MC.
On this project, he calls upon longtime collaborators Theory Hazit, Gen.Erik, and Zapata for their production talents. This infuses a great deal of chemistry into the album, as they know there way creatively around each other. Another great thing about this album is in how the album is structured and organized.
On the track, Left You, Serge Severe reminds us what the game was missing without him. It’s also, on this song, that he displays the poetic resonance that sets him apart lyrically from his contemporaries. His cadence and his wordplay are simply exceptional here. He does this over a tapered instrumental from the producer, Calev. It really sets the table for the whole album. Check out this foray in the second verse:
I’m the who’s who / Of the who’s who / Whose you? / Trends I’m not following I don’t do what these dudes do / Formulating my kind of patience so that my moves true / True like factual / Proof like actual / So under the pale moonlight I do write natural / I trust instincts / But what I do’s quite tactical / Papi. / No carbon copy just a few slight attributes / Spit in the wind when I paint it blue / And it blew right past to use that strikes fast to you / I’m for where prisons are built at least three times fast as schools…
The way he assembles the aforementioned bars is nothing short of remarkable. The dynamic of how one word connects to the next and how the phrases are intertwined is nothing short of just being special.
This album abounds in head-nodding production and funky instrumentals. It’s is literally littered with dopeness and there are so many tracks to select from when it comes to speaking on them for this review, but let me touch on the track PaSSport. Zapata creates an extremely addictive track. The bassline here, with the drums, almost gives the feel that Severe is rocking with a live band. The addition of the flute and the keyboard just adds incredible flair. Severe then assembles an assortment of bars unlike any other with lines concocted like the one noted below:
…Heavy thinking for hours, got to know my pain a lot / Writing in my room, showers hit that window pane a lot / Beats were my canvas, like Bob Ross I paint a lot…
The album is filled with energy and flair, funk and boom-bap. But it closes perfectly with the Maze Rockwell produced track, The Vigil, which is coincidentally my favorite. There’s a choral element here that I really enjoy along with thick drums and horns. It’s the counterpoint to the intro if you ask me. As the intro track serves as a subtle re-introduction to Severe, the closing track serves to put you on notice. It’s as if to say, gather, put your hands together and be thankful for his return.
I can not laud enough praise on The MC, both the album and the artist. Serge Severe is a master craftsman of bars. His writing style is original and intelligent. His vision in artistry is just articulated differently than others. This album serves as a great reminder and testament to what is capable in hip-hop in the year 2018. Severe stepped back from making projects for a few years but may have unleashed a career-defining effort. Savor the excellence.